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Hard to start when warm or hot. Found the solution!!
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thuestis
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Location: brentwood, tn
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PostPosted: Sat Sep 28, 2019 7:52 am    Post subject: Hard to start when warm or hot. Found the solution!! Reply with quote

Guys,

Thought I would share with you the solution to my issue of difficulty to start when the engine is fully warmed up! My bus is 6 volt.

My engine was recently rebuilt by a very reputable shop in Charlotte, NC. It runs, starts & stops wonderfully! When cold, the bus quickly starts with the turn of the key. The only issue was it could be very difficult to start after a long drive.. and then I stop and go into a store and come back out 5 minutes later. When I would try to start it the bus would often just barely turn over as though the battery were almost dead.

I checked and cleaned ALL the connections
The battery cables are new
The starter motor is new and installed with the engine rebuild
Replaced the battery with a new Otima 6 volt
Kept the battery on a suitable tender when not driving
installed a hard start relay...but still no improvement

Then I came across this article:

If your starter easily cranks a cold engine, but “drags” or cranks very slowly when hot, there may be a “heat soak” problem. Before you condemn the starter as bad, you should perform a system diagnosis of the battery, cables and starter. For a good overview of these tests, visit www.bbbind.com – click on “Technical Information”, select “Training Videos”, and view “How to troubleshoot a starter problem”.



Assuming that the diagnosis results are within acceptable ranges and the starter cranks fine when cold, it is quite possibly a “heat soak” condition. What exactly is starter “Heat Soak”? Without getting into the physics of thermal conduction or Newton’s law of convective cooling, it is simply a matter of the starter absorbing and retaining heat from under-hood sources such as the exhaust manifold. This absorbed heat adds resistance to the electrical conductors inside the starter. The additional resistance results in the starter requiring more amperage than it normally does when cool. Once under-hood heat warms the battery, cables, and starter, a “tipping point” is reached concerning the overall amount of resistance a starter can accept (and still function

properly).



The TOTAL effect of all this unwanted resistance is a dramatically reduced current flow, which in turn means the starter is limited in current, and therefore either turns very slowly or not at all. The starter solenoid is equally vulnerable to this condition, and thus may not activate the starter at all. Another overlooked contributor to “heat soak” is corroded battery cables. At some point, cleaning the battery terminals and connectors may no longer help if the corrosion has already spread throughout the length of the cables. The cable’s outer insulation “hides” the corrosion.




[b]Heat soak can usually be solved by installing a heat shield on the starter; this will reflect the heat away from starter. In fact, many vehicles are originally equipped from the factory with a heat shield. Unfortunately, they are often discarded when the starter is replaced. You can likely find a used heat shield at a salvage yard, or source a new one from your local parts store. Other fixes can involve upgrading the battery cables with a heavier gauge cable or installing a higher capacity battery. Anything that will keep the starter cooler or allow more amperage to the starter should help considerably.


So I searched on the internet and found and installed DEI's "Versa Shield Starter Shield" on my starter........ and the problem is now completely resolved.

Hope this might help someone else who is having similar issues.



https://designengineering.com/versa-shield-starter-shield/
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Eric&Barb
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Joined: September 19, 2004
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Location: Olympia Wash Rinse & Repeat
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PostPosted: Sat Sep 28, 2019 12:25 pm    Post subject: Re: Hard to start when warm or hot. Found the solution!! Reply with quote

If the starter in these old ACVWs was right next to an exhaust pipe that would make sense.

More likely if you removed the starter to install the heat shield, you inadvertently cleaned and/or tightened the starter ground connection. Starter needs to have a really good ground to the transaxle. Any voltage drop there can show up as a slow starter with the engine warmed up. Which is when the engine will have more compression (than when cold) that needs to be over come by the starter.
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chrisflstf
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PostPosted: Sat Sep 28, 2019 2:48 pm    Post subject: Re: Hard to start when warm or hot. Found the solution!! Reply with quote

That theory could easily be tested by removing the heat shield, but the ground path does need to be good for the starter to pull current. I have a run a ground cable direct from the starter to the battery/pan before
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Eric&Barb
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PostPosted: Sat Sep 28, 2019 2:58 pm    Post subject: Re: Hard to start when warm or hot. Found the solution!! Reply with quote

chrisflstf wrote:
I have a run a ground cable direct from the starter to the battery/pan before


That is an old time tested tractor owner trick!
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thuestis
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Location: brentwood, tn
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PostPosted: Sat Sep 28, 2019 4:16 pm    Post subject: Re: Hard to start when warm or hot. Found the solution!! Reply with quote

I installed the heat shield without removing the starter.

Guys, trust me when I say I cleaned and tightened every single connection! Probably twice.

The wrap-around heat shield is what made the difference.
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